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July 07, 2008

Woman arrested at McCain event for "McCain=Bush" sign

A 61-year-old librarian was ejected from an ostensibly public McCain campaign event at the Denver Center of Performing Arts in Denver, CO on June 7 because she was brandishing a deadly memetic weapon: a hand-lettered sign that read "McCain=Bush."

Carol Kreck was standing outside the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, on city property. Ms. Kreck objected that she was standing on city property. She was lead away by a police office and ticketed for trespassing.

Carol Kreck, QED.

As ThinkProgress notes: "McCain has apparently taken a page from the Bush playbook. In 2005, the White House had three activists expelled from a Denver public forum with President Bush because it was the administration’s policy “to exclude potentially disruptive guests from Bush’s appearances nationwide.”"

Update: A commenter asks how I know Kreck was arrested. About 1:03 into the video, she asks whether she is being arrested. The police officer escorting her answers "yes."


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I've been told that when the police stop you to give you a citation, you are under "arrest" (which refers to 'stopping', ref: cardiac arrest). If you want to argue the fact, try leaving before the police are done with you. They will prevent your leaving, and you may be charged with a more serious offense than any related to the traffic stop.

Additionally, you'll hear the occasional reference tot he magical words "Am I free to go?" and if the answer is "no", you're under arrest.

She was arrested. She was charged with a violation of the law when she was clearly operating within the law.

And it's fucking *twisted* that I have to mention this in the days after 7/4, but the most fundamental right is the right to be left alone, and in peace and "... to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."

FOR: Lindsay Beyerstein

Was a time, THEY cringed in fear of We The People and conducted affairs to OUR bidding!

Q: When was that, TonyPony?

A: Many a early American politician was escorted to a nearby oak tree and was given the tax-man stretch. Around the world, history shows despots just hangin' around. Those folks didn't take a whole lotta' crap.

Why? You wanna do something different? Be patient.


Right on, parse! She had the courage to bring the signage, but lacked the finesse to stand up for her Constitutional right to attend a public event on public property. Others around her failed to come to her aid, and failed to join with her to demand the authoritites recognize her right to free speech cannot be abridged. So, all of us, next time you see someone attempting to exercise free speech and getting hassled, step up and demand the authority in question be accountable for violating free speech. Commit to memory, and read aloud the Constitutional passage that describes this right of free assempbly, and urge others in the crowd among you to join in your mutual Constitutionally-guaranteed right to dissent. Step up, and be heard!

Doesn't this prove McCain equals Bush?

She asks a good question at the end of the video. Why are the Republicans threatened when they voted for Bush in the first place? Isn't there a recent photo of McCain and Bush hugging?

"Isn't there a recent photo of McCain and Bush hugging?"

And if there is, how do Laura and Cindy and "Dr." James Dobson feel about it?

She got the arrest and the ticketing on video, so I think she did her part.

If anything, the fact that she was so nice and non-confrontational made the video more powerful. The standard police excuse in these cases is that the victim was confrontational or disruptive or refused to follow some small direction thereby necessitating a disproportionate response on the officer's part.

Sometimes passive resistance makes for good street theater, especially if you're dependent upon the media to record the event and disseminate it. The more drama, the more likely you are to get at least some media play.

But now that activists can make their own videos, political street theater and non-violent resistance are entering into a whole new age.

I don't think she was arrested. If you listen closely, she is responding to a passerby who is asking her what is happening. Here's the transcript as I hear it:

Passerby: Did you get arrested?
Kreck: Am I being arrested? [asking if that's what he had asked her]
Passerby: Yeah.
Kreck: Uh, removed, I don't know if I'm.., [inaudible]

I don't think the police officer was part of that conversation. Also later, she tells the camera that the police officer told her she *would be* arrested if she came back into the plaza.

Go Carol Kreck!

Bush = McCain = Putin = Mugabe = ??????

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